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Second success for equestrian rider

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Great Britain’s Natasha Baker exceeded all expectations to win her second Paralympic gold medal by a massive margin with Cabral yesterday.

And Hammersmith-born Baker also set her second Paralympic record score, this time 82.8 per cent in the Grade II freestyle, at her first Games.

Having won her first gold medal two days ago, Royal Mail has already confirmed that Uxbridge High Street will be sporting her gold postbox and Baker’s stamp has also been released.

The bubbly 22-year-old gave credit to all the support she had from the home crowd and said: “It felt like the best test I’ve probably ever done and what a place to do it.

“It is a personal best and Paralympic record, two in two days; that is pretty special isn’t it?

“I was so far behind my music I had to completely improvise. I think I might improvise a bit more often!

“I had to cut a corner, but I think it looked quite good artistically. I was going to change my music after this, but I may not now!

“The music really shows JP off to his max. It is literally foot perfect. Ken Barnsely, who died last year, put it together for me. He’s played a massive part in me getting that score,” said Natasha, who admitted to being extremely superstitious.

“The opening ceremony was the night before I was competing and we were a bit cheeky and had a McDonalds, so every day since I have a McDonalds the day before I’ve competed and it’s worked.”

The silver and bronze medals went to the same two Germans as in the Individual Championship Test.

Britta Napel, who runs her own yard for disabled riders, produced a test full of energy, but had a couple of errors with the 14-year-old mare Aquilina.

Bronze went to Britta’s teammate Angelika Trabert on another mare, the nine-year-old Ariva-Avanti, again only a fraction behind on 76%.

Angelika, who is competing at her fifth Paralympics, said: “We are happy everything went so well; we all worked together as a team and that is worth gold. We are going to celebrate.”

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